Featured Broker: Core Spreads - Get the tightest spreads on FX, CFD & Spreadbetting (more info)
Use our comparison tables to compare the best CFD brokers authorised and regulated by the FCA. Choose or switch to a CFD broker that offers the most markets, best pricing and client security.
CFD trading carries a high level of risk and can result in losses that exceed your deposits. Featured brokers appear first.
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How to compare CFD trading brokers?
If you’re looking for a new or your first CFD trading broker there are a few key points to compare when deciding who to open an account with.
Firstly, you need to look at price. Some CFD brokers charge commission whereas others included the costs in the CFD spread. Normally, it’s only DMA CFD brokers that charge commission but use our CFD broker comparison tables to check.
Secondly, are they regulated by the FCA. All CFD trading brokers need to be regulated by the FCA. Be careful to check on the FCA register that your brokers is actually regulated as a UK firm, rather than being regulated in somewhere like Cyprus and using the EU to passport the regulation so it appears as though they are. Only fully FCA authorised and regulated brokers offer client funds protection under the FSCS.
Thirdly, how good is there online trading platform? When comparing CFD trading brokers You can watch as many videos on youtube as you like but the only way to really get a feel for a platform is to open up a CFD trading demo account. You don’t need to risk any money but it will give you an idea of how it works, albeit with limited functionality.
ETX Capital are one of the oldest CFD brokers in the UK. ETX was founded in 1965 as Monecor and remains a member of the London Stock exchange.
They offer tight spreads as low as 0.7 on EuroDollar and 0.9 on other FX pairs.
ETX has won some pretty decent awards including: Money AM Awards 2012 Best Online Charts. Investment Trends Award 2013 Best Value for Money and UK Forex Award 2013 Best Forex Trading Tool & Software.
For new clients they offer free demo account test their Pro, MT4 and Binary trading platforms (more info).
The company has offices worldwide, but is HQ’d in London. The firm was founded by Peter Cruddas in 1989 and is now listed on the LSE.
The firm is one of the few regulated binary options brokers when it introduced the short term limited risk bets in 2015.
CMC Markets have pioneered the industry in terms of discounted pricing and market access focusing on the most liquid markets. You can try the CMC Markets trading platform here.
Plus 500 are one of the largest CFD brokers in the world. Plus500 Ltd is listed on the AIM section of the London Stock Exchange. Market Cap as of May 2017 is over £1bn. Plus500UK Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN 509909). Your capital is at risk.
What makes them stand out in a few words?, they are a nice basic broker for new traders to get started with. Spreads are tight as you would expect you can see a list of spreads and fees here. There is an in-activity if the account isn’t used through.
Spreadex are a nice traditional CFD broker located just outside London. They tend to cater for more professional traders who value customer service above pricing.
Spreadex have been around since the 1990’s and have won a plethora of awards, most recently the Wealth and Financial International, Alternative Investment Awards 2016 (Best Spread Betting Provider – winner) and City of London Wealth Management Awards 2016 (Best Spread Betting Provider – winner).
They offer new clients £500 to switch accounts to drum up new business and offer traditional spread betting as well. You can even set your margin limits to 100% if you want to trade on a non-leveraged basis and just take advantage of the tax breaks.
If you go to ayondo because of the social trading feature you can earn money by getting other traders to follow you or by choosing a winning trader to follow. Obviously picking a winning trader to follow is just as hard as picking a winning stock! Sign up with ayondo here.
Core Spreads are one of the newest CFD brokers in the UK. Core Spreads objective is to provide the tightest spreads in the industry but offering an execution only platform (i.e. now news, analysis, or trader tools).
The spreads are some of the tightest in the industry and are available as CFDs or spread bets on their own Core Trader platform or MT4.
Core Spreads also offer new clients a 50% bonus in the form of a spread rebate. This means that you get half your trading costs back for the first month back into your account.
For CFD traders looking to reduce trading costs Core Spreads offer a simple, quick and easy to use trading platform find out more.
One of the fastest growing CFD brokers is eToro the social trading network, originally called retail FX when it was founded in 2006.
It now has millions of traders ranked in leagues across the world. eToro website claims to have over 4,500,000 registered traders.
Being a social trading network it is possible to earn money by being a leader or by following a profitable trader. Find out more…
How do CFDs (Contract for Differences) Work?
Trading CFDs is a form of high risk, high reward speculation on the financial markets. By using one of the best CFD brokers in the UK clients can trade shares, FX, commodities, fixed income and indices like the FTSE, Dax, Down and S&P. CFDs are a leveraged OTC (over the counter) product so you don’t actually own the underlying asset – just receive a profit and loss based on the difference between the price at which you open and close a trade. You can read more about how CFD trading works here.
What does CFD trading mean?
Firstly it means that you are not buying or selling an actual asset. You are entering into a contract for the difference between the closing and opening price of a trade based on how many contracts you buy. The amount of contracts usually mirrors the same amount in the underlying market.
Read more on CFD (Contracts for Difference) trading meaning here
How to compare CFD trading platforms?
There is no easy way to compare CFD trading platforms on a comparison table. You need to try them out.
When you are trying different CFD trading platforms make sure you only open demo accounts with brokers as it is quicker and you don’t have to risk any funds.
Read more on the best way to compare CFD trading platforms here
Top three reasons to trade CFDs
CFDs are one of the most cost effective ways to speculate on the financial markets. They provide many advantages over traditional investing – but of course with these advantages come disadvantages. You can make big money, but you can also lose big if you don’t know what you are doing and don’t use a well respected CFD broker.
CFD trading Strategies that can help you make money
If you want to be a profitable CFD trader you need to follow some golden rules of CFD trading. It’s not difficult to make profitable trades, but what is difficult is ensuring that you make more profits on your winning trades than you make losses on your losing trades. It’s a well know fact that even the best traders in the world only get it right half the time. It’s how they manage their CFD positions that sets them apart and makes them better traders.
Read more on the best CFD trading strategies here
Here are five quick CFD trading tips
- Don’t trade with more than you can afford to lose
- Run your profitable trades
- Cut your losing trades quickly
- Use stop losses to minimise risk
- Combine technical and fundamental analysis before trading
CFD stocks brokers versus index and FX
FX and index only CFD brokers tend to be smaller and less established than CFD brokers that offer a broad range of share and stock trading.
Going with an established broker that offers FD stocks trading gives you more flexibility over what you can trade.
CFDs versus Spread Betting
Spread betting and CFDs are fairly similar in some respects but totally different in others. Find out the major differences between CFD brokers and spread betting brokers and see which is right for you. Whatever product you trade though always read CFD broker reviews to ensure that any broker you choose is regulated by the FCA and have their head office based in London.
Trading stocks and shares on CFDs
The key advantage of trading stocks on CFDs is that you don’t have to pay stamp duty to the government. Also, unlike spread betting you can still get DMA. DMA enables you to get into the order book for trading at the best possible prices. The best equity CFD brokers will offer access to the global markets, but this is generally only for the larger brokers – smaller CFD brokers tend to only offer FX, commodity, index and fixed income prices.
DMA (Direct Market Access) CFD brokers
DMA CFD brokers are really only suitable for clients trading with over £100k on account or for hedge funds. Being able to get inside the bid/offer spread is great, but in reality it doesn’t make a difference, unless you are working really big orders on limits or a high frequency trader. You can read up on the best DMA CFD brokers here. If you need to trade CFDs on DMA make sure you understand that missing a price because you are trying to nick an extra 0.25p could be a costly error. If you’re a professional trader you should only be dealing with a DMA CFD broker.
Advisory CFD brokers
CFDs are a very high risk product and it’s important that clients understand the risks involved before opening an account. Over the years the FCA has clapped down on advisory CFD brokers providing advice and hard core sales tactics used by CFD brokers to get clients to trade more. This website is all about execution only CFD brokers – that means CFD brokers that do not provide advice or recommend trades.
Best CFD brokers for trading Forex
FX CFDs are one of the most popular asset classes in the world. The foreign exchange market trades well over $4 trillion in volume everyday and a large percentage of that is from client speculating on short term price movements by trading Forex on CFDs. Take a look at our FX CFD comparison tables to see the best CFD brokers for trading Forex. There are always a few key points that make one broker stand out above the others, tight spreads and bonus offers being a major factor in brokers winning business from one another.
Index trading on CFDs – where to get the best access
The FTSE, Down, Dax and S&P are the major indices that are traded via CFDs at the moment. They offer great liquidity, news flow and are open 24 hours a day. As the underlying stock markets open and close the indices become more volatile so there is plenty of excitement and opportunity to be had from first thing in the morning until well in to the night. Spreads are tight and the intra-day range can be well charted. The top CFD brokers for index trading offer low initial margins on indices providing good leverage for trading on margin.
Reduce your trading costs with a CFD broker rebate program
The more CFDs you trade the lower your trading costs should be. Some brokers charge a commission and others add the commission into the prices they quote. IF your broker is charging commission they may offer a reduction in rates if you deal a certain amount. But for CFD brokers that price in commission to the spread they offer high volume traders a monthly rebate once they trade above a certain amount. See the top CFD rebate programs here.
Top ten CFD brokers in the UK
If you’re looking for your first CFD broker, or want to diversify your risk, by spreading your trading around a few brokers take a look at our top ten CFD brokers section. It provides all the key information on the top ten CFD brokers in the UK, spreads, bonuses, when they were founded – we also show the pros and cons of using each broker. To be in the top ten all brokers must be UK based and regulated by the FCA.
CFD broker reviews – what CFD broker is best?
Choosing a CFD broker is a matter of personal preference. It can be based on anything from colour scheme to how friendly or efficient the customer support or dealing desk. If you want to read reviews of the major CFD brokers in the industry view or CFD broker reviews section.
CFD research and technical analysis
Most decent CFD brokers provide some kind of research and analysis on the markets for their customers. But generally the better the broker the better the research, tools and analysis. It costs a lot of money to hire analysts and provide data to clients and some of it (if you know how to use it) can be exceptionally useful. Technical analysis provides a good overview of the markets based on charts and historical data
- Fundamental analysis users company financial releases to evaluate the health of a share price
- Economic data and calendars show when important announcements are due that could result in a price move.
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